Queensland Firefighters brace for return to dangerous fire conditions

A combustible mix of treacherous weather and a dry landscape are threatening to deliver a second round of dangerous fire conditions in Queensland in as many weeks. 
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) Commissioner Katarina Carroll said firefighters were bracing for another challenging period over the coming days on the back of an escalating bushfire risk. 
“A very high fire danger will envelop most of the state this weekend and early next week, meaning any bushfires that ignite could spread rapidly and be difficult to control,” Ms Carroll said. 
“We are facing strong wind gusts combining with warm weather and parched grass and bushland to fuel large fires.
“These conditions are like those that beset the south-east and south-west parts of the state last week, but this time it will be over a much broader area.”
Ms Carroll said QFES was taking pre-emptive measures to counter the heightened fire danger.
“Local fire bans have been imposed in the Ipswich, Somerset, Lockyer, Logan, Scenic Rim and Gold Coast local government areas,” she said. 
“These bans took effect at midnight on Wednesday, August 15 and will remain in place until midnight on Monday, August 20.
“Permits to light fires were suspended in Moreton Bay, Brisbane and Redland City local government areas from midnight on Thursday, August 16 and will remain in place until conditions improve.
“Extra firefighting crews are also on standby across the state to respond at a moment’s notice.”
Ms Carroll said the local fire bans and permit suspensions were in the interests of the community. 
“Decisions to impose bans and suspend permits are not made lightly, but they are essential to protect people in bushfire-prone areas,” she said.
“It is vital people in these local government areas follow the requirements of the local fire bans and permit suspensions.
“We cannot chance a fire breaking out this weekend and early next week.”
Ms Carroll urged people to take steps to protect themselves and prevent bushfires starting.
“The smallest spark from welding, grinding, slashing and mowing is enough to start a fire this weekend and early next week, so anyone using power tools or machinery must be extra vigilant,” she said. 
“The intense start to the 2018 bushfire season is also a timely reminder to everyone to have a Bushfire Survival Plan so they know what to do if a fire breaks out.
“Residents should ensure they clear any flammable debris from around the home.
“Given the forecast for the season ahead, it is a must that all Queenslanders do their bit now to prepare.”
To Prepare visit our updated page  What you should do in the event of a bush fire 

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